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 Dr. He with EIU students

Molecular Engineering of Light-harvesting Materials for Solar Energy Conversion

Hongshan He, PhD Department of Chemistry, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL 61920

Sun provides a tremendous amount of energy on Earth, and if we can convert a tiny amount of it to electricity, our energy shortage problem could be solved. Dye-sensitized solar cell is an important technology for cost-effective conversion of solar energy. One feature of this technology is to use dye-sensitized metal oxide nanomaterials to harvest sunlight and generate free electrons for the production of electricity. In this process, dyes adsorb on the surface of metal oxide nanomaterials. They first absorb the sunlight, then after several consecutive processes, including electron injection, migration, and dye regeneration, the electricity is produced. How broad of dyes absorb the sunlight and how strong they adsorb on metal oxide are crucial to power conversion efficiency and long-term stability of the devices. Dr. He and his students are using a molecular engineering approach to address these issues. It is expected that his research will advancing high efficiency and stable devices.

(1)    Broaden light absorption capability of dyes. In an ideal situation, dye molecules should absorb a wide range of light from the visible to the near-infrared region. However, the current dyes only absorb up to 750 nm, leading to unsatisfactory power conversion efficiency for commercialization. The problem is also accompanied by discontinuous absorption characteristics, which causes poor incident photons to current efficiency at certain wavelengths. Both are unfavorable for obtaining high-efficiency dye-sensitized solar cells. To overcome these barriers, Dr. He and his students use theoretical modelling tools to identify potential dyes. Then they spend significant amount of time in laboratories to make those molecules, and test their photovoltaic performance in fabricated devices. Dr. He group is very interested in two types of molecules: porphyrins and boron-dipyrromethenes.      

(2)    Increase the binding strength of dyes to metal oxide nanomaterials. In order to make dye-sensitized solar cell operational for longer time, all components of the devices should show no or little alteration during its operation. However, devices will work only if the photosensitizers stay on the surface of the nanoparticles. State-of-the-art photosensitizers have weak binding strength is weak. The dye molecules will dissociate from metal oxide easily resulting poor stability of the devices. The approach that Dr. He and his students are using to tackle this problem is to replace conventional anchoring group with other multidentate ligands. One potential ligand is 8-hydroxylquinoline that shows very strong resistance to acidic and basic condition.     

The research in Dr. He group is highly interdisciplinary. It spans from theoretical modeling, organic synthesis, spectroscopy, device engineering, fabrication, and characterization. It provides great opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students who have passion about renewable and sustainable energy. 

 

New Gall Wasp Species Attacking Chestnut Trees: Dryocosmus zhuili n. sp. (Hymenoptera: Cynipidae) on Castanea henryi from Southeastern China

 

Dao-Hong Zhu, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha, Zhiwei Liu, Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL, Peng-Fei Lu, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha, Xiao-Hui Yang, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha, Cheng-Yuan Su, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha and Peter Liu, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL 

J. Insect Sci. (2015) 15(1): 156; DOI: 10.1093/jisesa/iev118

ABSTRACT. A new gall wasp species, Dryocosmus zhuili Liu et Zhu, is herein described from the southeastern Fujian province of China. The new species induces galls on trees of Henry’s chestnut, Castanea henryi, which is also a native host for the notorious Oriental chestnut gall wasp (OCGW, Dryocosmus kuriphilus Yasumatsu). D. zhuili overlaps with OCGW in emergence time and induces galls mor- phologically similar to that of OCGW on similar plant parts. In a previous study, we reported considerable divergence between mtDNA CO1 (mitochondrial DNA Cytochrome c oxidase subunit I) sequences of these wasps and the true OCGW wasps and suggested the exis- tence of a cryptic species. Herein, we confirm the identity of the new species based on morphological and biological differences and provide a formal description. Although the new species is relatively easily separated from OCGW on basis of morphology, field identifi- cation involving the two species can still be problematic because of their small body size, highly similar gall morphology, and other life history traits. We further discussed the potential of the new species to be a pest for the chestnut industry and the consequences of ac- cidental introduction of this species into nonnative areas, especially with regard to the bisexual reproduction mode of the new species in contrast to the parthenogenetic reproduction mode of OCGW.

 

Improving Undergraduate Research Participation and Production in Technology Programs

Dr. Isaac Slaven, Dr. Austin Cheney

Abstract: Undergraduate students reap multiple benefits from participation in research. These include better job placement, increased interest in coursework, and a higher interest in graduate studies. This presentation discusses the techniques used to increase the participation and production of undergrads in independent and structured research programs, the successful outcomes, and the lessons learned.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Applying a Business-Level Strategy Perspective to Technology Department School Administration

Dr. Austin C Cheney

Abstract: My experience working at four different types of institutions (2-year technical college, 2/4 year technical college, master's comprehensive, and doctoral institution) has shown that colleges and universities typically do not approach academic department/school/college/university management from a business perspective. The changing environment in higher education necessitates that we approach planning differently if our institutions wish to remain competitive.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Monitoring UV Exposure in Synthetic Life-Safety Equipment

Ms. Stephany Fonseca, Dr. Isaac S Slaven

Abstract: Synthetics used in life-safety and rigging equipment degrade with ultra-violet (UV) light exposure. This presentation outlines a technique used in developing a proof-of-concept for a UV dosimeter to monitor the accumulated UV radiation.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Evaluation of stereoscopic vision for manufacturing applications

Dr. Wutthigrai Boonsuk

Abstract: Attendees will learn the usefulness of stereoscopic vision for industrial applications. The effects of external parameters (e.g. lighting condition, surface roughness, material property) on depth estimation will be analyzed and presented. Proper setting of these external parameters will also be discussed.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Eventorbot: An Open Source 3D Printer Manufacturing and Improving.

Mr. Haizhou Li, Dr. Jerry Cloward, Mr. Brendan Clary

Abstract: Manufacturing your own open source 3D printer will be a good way for schools to educate students and attract students’ interests. In the future many of our everyday tools will be designed via computers and manufactured using 3D printers. If people can easily use already owned 3D printers to print more 3D printers then it will not only decrease the cost of a 3D printer, but also allow more people to use 3D printers. Allowing students and institutions to create their own 3D printers will increase peoples’ knowledge and interest in this area.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

The effects of performance and longevity of AISI 4141 steel in the firearms industry

Mr. Daniel T Stock, Dr. David W Melton, Dr. Isaac Slaven

Abstract:  Attendees will gain information to help them understand the complexity of how common steel coatings used in the firearms industry can be effected when different environmental conditions occur during the usage of firearms.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

The interaction of students online to collaborate the development, design, and completion of CAED group based projects.

Dr. David W Melton, Mr. Sean T Roberts

Abstract: This presentation will describe the preparation of the solid modeling course, from the classroom through the progression towards the web.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

A Study of Effect of Surface Condition on Energy Production of Photovoltaic Solar Arrays

Mr. Arif Ali Jalbani, Dr. Rendong Bai, Dr. Isaac Slaven, Dr. Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: Solar as a renewable energy source, is expected to help reduce the nation's dependency on foreign oil or other fossil fuels. The world is moving towards more solar energy, and the pace is improving day by day. It is important to study factors that influence the performance of solar PV systems. This study will help identify impact of dust accumulation on efficiency of PV plant. This study will further identify suitable methods to reduce these energy losses of this PV plant and other PV plants to be installed with similar environmental conditions.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Arduino Board and Arduino Integrated Development Environment

Mr. Rishank Chandra Puram, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Dr. Redong Bai

Abstract: Arduino is an open source environment and it is very easy and available to everyone. This presentation introduces the audience to Arduino hardware, and its integrated development environment (IDE) interface tool for software development. A simple example will be demonstrated on how to program an Arduino controller.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Study of biomass gasification as a renewable energy technology using feedstock of Arundo donax and Switchgrass

Mr. Ernest Echefu, Mr. Seyedramin Ramin Khalilinejad, Dr. Jerry Cloward, Dr. Peter Liu

Abstract: The present paper illustrates biomass gasification technology and related experimental instruments as well as basic calculations for syngas production analysis. In addition, the methodology used in the paper can be used for future experiments to form a comprehensive data base of the local energy crops. Finally, discussions presented in the paper are conducted towards alternative solutions for common challenges in practical biomass applications from energy crop farmlands to syngas production and related power generation.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Natural User Interface Using Kinect Sensing Technology for Motion-Controlled Deployment

Dr. Rendong Bai, Dr. Wutthigrai Boonsuk, Dr. Peter 0 Liu

Abstract: In this presentation, we will explain how Kinect sensor works and its potential applications. We will explain the development and deployment of Kinect solutions, which enable us to interact naturally with computers by simply gesturing and speaking. We also plan to demonstrate a few Kinect application examples.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Key factors towards customer satisfaction in PV solar manufacturing and related market

Mr. Arif Jalbani, Mr. Seyedramin Ramin Khalilinejad, Dr. Jerry Cloward, Dr. Peter Liu

Abstract: Basically, the paper would try to end up with an applicable guideline for PV solar operation and related power monitoring based on a practical study. Furthermore, the basic factors for selecting the best PV solar arrays from different manufacturers with different technologies and specifications would be introduced. Eventually, the paper would discuss the technical issues in PV solar manufacturing in order to suggest possible solutions towards customer satisfaction as the key element for developing a successful Total Quality System (TQS) in the market.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for Renewable Energy Centre at Eastern Illinois University:Energy Production and Environmental Impacts

Mr. Sailesh Adhikari, Dr. Chao Wen, Dr. Peter Liu,

Abstract: The Life-cycle Assessment of the Renewable Energy Center on campus of Eastern Illinois University assess the emission from biomass gasification process and compares the result with natural gas and coal firing process. Also audience will be informed about the variation of emissions and approaches to reuse the byproduct of gasification process. This research will explain how to make the supply chain of REC more sustainable.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Application of Online Gas Analyzer to Monitor Quality and Quantity of Syngas Production for Renewable Energy

Mr. Ernest Echefu, Dr. Peter P Liu, Dr. Jerry Cloward

Abstract: As a part of renewable energy production, it is important to know the composition of syngas produced from a biomass gasification process in order to understand the conversion efficiency and energy value of gas being produced. This presentation will introduce the audience to an online monitoring instrument used to measure the syngas composition, including carbon monoxide, hydrogen, and methane. Experiments show the online monitoring is fast and effective in measuring the gas composition simultaneously.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Preparing AET Construction Technology Students for the 21st Century Construction Industry Through Studying Dubai’s Booming Construction Technology

Dr. Wafeek S. Wahby

Abstract: Studying the Dubai modern model of construction technology helps understand how to overcome challenges and achieve unprecedented success for construction technology students as they prepare to join the workforce in a competitive job market.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 

Strengthening Academia and Industry Connections Boosts Construction Materials and Equipment

Dr. Wafeek S. Wahby

Abstract: Academia and industry—together—can achieve a much greater and faster progress of the construction industry than can be achieved should they operate apart from each other. The challenges expected during the 21st Century in the construction industry necessitate more collaboration between academia and industry to arrive at better construction materials, equipment, and personnel.

Presented at Building Bridges, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, November 11-14, 2015.

 
 

Evaluate Feasibility of Sustainable and Economical Utilization of Biomass Gasification Byproducts

Vinod Patel, B.K. Sharma, Wei Zhang, Peter Ping Liu and Mori Toosi

Abstract: The overall objective of this study was to develop a unique, environmentally friendly technology to make value-added building materials from gasification solid waste, thereby managing solid waste efficiently and avoiding landfills, saving natural resources, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It is hoped that this investigation could benefit solid waste, gasification, and concrete/clay products industries, and could help protect the environment and communities. This project was also intended to explore the feasibility of using biomass gasification ash (BGA; a combination of fly ash and bottom ash) as an admixture in concrete materials. Cement production consumes a significant amount of energy. Biomass ash can be used to replace some portion of required cement in concrete mix as a sustainable construction practice, which can result in a significant energy savings to society. Through our lab-scale brick study, we determined that BGA can be used to replace clay and shale as raw materials in brick making. The replacement percentage level can be up to 10% by mass and 18% by volume. A concrete mix using 10% or 20% biomass gasification ash to replace cement was shown to have satisfactory compressive strength for field applications, typical of 3,000 psi grade concrete.

Published by ISTC Reports (TR-057) May 2015. Click here to read this research report.

 

The Application of SAP in Human Resource Management

Mr. Rajani Pingili, Dr. Rendong Bai and Dr. Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: The data related to all the modules can be stored in one database. It will not only facilitate data consistency but also make communication among departments is very easy. With the implementation of SAP, there will be a good integration among employee personal master data, time management data, benefits data, courses and instructors’ data, students’ data and payroll data.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Curriculum Development for Renewable Energy Education

Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Dr. Jerry Cloward and Dr. Rendong Bai

Abstract:  Current renewable energy curriculum will be shown, as well as what new research is being integrated. Though the use of this new curriculum, students will learn about past and current research. This information will be advantageous to the students and the EIU School of Technology as we continue to move forward in renewable energy research.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Develop an Effective Way to Multi-Task While Messaging on Mobile Devices

Rendong Bai and Dr. Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: By creating this mobile app, we will efficiently implement multi-tasking without consuming too much screen space. The current messaging system takes a minimum of three steps to switch between apps. Our design reduces the number steps to zero.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Investigation on Temperature and Pressure Profiles in a Downdraft Gasifier Using Different Biomass Feedstock

Mr. Ramin Khalilinejad, Dr. Jerry Cloward and Dr. Peter Ping Liu 

Abstract: The results of the paper provide useful data of essential factors like mechanical design, feedstock properties and Syngas quality in a gasification process. Thus, it will develop the map of manufacturing and controlling the gasification technology in the future.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Predicting Building Thermal Energy Loss from the Use of Automatic Door Openers

Dr. Isaac Slaven

Abstract: This study provides a predictive model that can be used to provide an estimate of the amount of thermal energy exchanged between the outside and inside of a building when a door is held open. The independent variables measured include: temperature gradient (the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures); air density, air flow, and the time the door is open. The estimates can be used to validate recommendations for adjustments in automatic door timing.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Renewable Energy and the Future of Electric-Based Cars 

Dr. Rendong Bai, Mr. George Buzard and Dr. Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: Renewable energy has the potential to help mitigate dependence on ever-diminishing sources of fossil fuels. Conceptualized and implemented systems to power automobiles will be discussed. Exploring various systems will provide insights on future technologies and their feasibility at home and at larger scales.

Presented at Technology-Tomorrow's Gateway, Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) Conference, St. Louis, MO, November 19-22, 2014.

 

Algal Biomass as a Binding Agent for the Densification of Miscanthus

 Dr. Thomas Canam, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Daniel B. Johnson, Sunil Thapa

Abstract: Lignocellulosic biomass has been regarded as an important future energy source due to its excessive availability; however, the wide application of this material for many applications is restricted by the high costs associated with densification, transportation, thermo-chemical pretreatment and conversion.  In order to increase the density of lignocellulosic biomass, it is typically compressed into pellets or briquettes. This frequently requires the addition of additives, which may negatively impact the economics of the process. Environmentally-friendly binding agents that can be obtained inexpensively are therefore desirable. This study examines the change in physicochemical properties of densified Miscanthus straw where algae were used as a binding agent. Methods: The algae (Rhizoclonium spp.) was obtained as a waste product from a local algal-based wastewater treatment system, dried and then added as a fine powder to milled Miscanthus.  The material was then compressed into discs using a mounting press, which were then assessed for calorific value, compressive strength and sugar content. Results: We found that the algae-Miscanthus discs had similar calorific values compared to Miscanthus with blends up to 30% algae, with significantly reduced calorific values at higher blends.  Furthermore, Miscanthus pellets mixed with algae had significantly greater compressive strength at blends at or above 20% algae content compared to pellets made from 100% Miscanthus, where the strength was directly proportional to the percentage of algae in the mixture. The glucose content of blends below 30% was not statistically different than 100% Miscanthus.  Conclusions: These data provide support for the use of algae as a binding agent for biomass destined for bioenergy and bioproduct processes, and highlight an additional end use for algal biomass.

Submitted to  Waste and Biomass Valorization, September 2014. Click here to read this article.

 

Strength and Energy Characteristics of Densified Miscanthus Straw Pretreated with the White-Rot Fungus Trametes Versicolor

Dr. Thomas Canam, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Dr. Tim J. Dumonceaux, Erwin R. Tuegel, Sunil Thapa

Abstract:  Lignocellulosic biomass has been regarded as an important future energy source due to its excessive availability; however, the wide application of this material is restricted by the high costs associated with transportation and thermo-chemical pretreatment and conversion. Pretreatment of biomass materials using biological agents, such as white-rot fungi, is regarded as an alternative strategy to traditional, high-input thermo-chemical processes. This study examines the change in physicochemical properties of densified biomass that has been pretreated with Trametes versicolor, which has proven to be an effective pretreatment agent for biomass destined for biofuel production. The Miscanthus straw was pretreated with either a wild-type strain (52J) or a cellobiose dehydrogenase-deficient strain (m4D) of Trametes versicolor. The data show that the fungal-treated Miscanthus straw had a higher overall calorific value compared to untreated material, presumably due to the additional biomass contribution from the fungus. Furthermore, the fungal-treated material showed improved binding characteristics, leading to biomass pellets that had significantly greater compressive strength than untreated straw. Furthermore, the ash content of the material treated with these strains of fungi was reduced. Together, these data provide further support for the use of white-rot fungi, particularly T. versicolor, as biological pretreatment agents for biomass destined for bioenergy and bioproduct processes.

Presented at  2014 International Biomass Conference & Expo, Orlando, FL, Mar 24-26, 2014. 

 

Chemical and Physical Properties of Miscanthus Straw Pretreated with Trametes Versicolor

Dr. Thomas Canam, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Erin Tuegel, Michael Bilek, Sunil Thapa, Tim Dumonceaux 

Abstract: The expense associated with thermochemical and thermomechanical pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass is a significant hurdle with respect to the economic feasibility of using this type of material for biofuel and bioproduct applications.  As a result, there is a growing movement to explore more environmentally benign and inexpensive pretreatment strategies.  One approach is to exploit the innate lignin-degrading properties of white-rot fungi, such as Trametes versicolor, which has proven to be an effective pretreatment agent for biomass destined for biofuel production.  Specifically, a novel strain of Trametes versicolordeficient in cellobiose dehydrogenase (m4D) was shown to be particularly effective at pretreating canola straw due to its inability to metabolize cellulose while deconstructing lignin.  The current study investigated the effects of the m4D strain of Trametes versicolor on Miscanthus straw, which is an energy grass that is expected to constitute a significant portion of the future lignocellulosic biomass portfolio in the United States.  The modified strain of T. versicolor increased the lignin extractability of the straw without an appreciable reduction in the amount of cellulose available.  In addition, the fungal-treated Miscanthus straw had a significantly higher overall calorific value compared to untreated material, presumably due to the additional biomass contribution from the fungus.  Furthermore, the fungal-treated material showed improved binding characteristics, leading to biomass pellets that had significantly greater compressive strength than untreated straw.  Together, these data provide further support for the use of white-rot fungi, particularly T. versicolor, as biological pretreatment agents for biomass for bioenergy.

Submitted to the Pan-American Congress on Plants and BioEnergy 2014 

 

Using RFID Transponders In A Geological Application To Enhance Student Learning Of Design Methodology

Dr. Isaac Slaven, Eastern Illinois University, Mr. Samuel Slaven, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Abstract:  A design process, that created a new method to insert RFID tags into rocks to track sediment flow, provides a case study including the stages of machine design methodology: problem definition, concept, design, prototype, redesign, testing, and analysis.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

A Study of Laboratory Scale Wind Power Generation For Sustainable Energy

Mr. George Buzard, Dr. Rendong Bai, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Dr. Jerry Cloward

Abstract: Techniques and practices of generating energy from wind will be discussed. A laboratory scale vertical wind turbine system provides insight on this technology and its advantages and limitations.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Utilizing Renewable Energy Biomass Gasification Ash as An Admixture In Concrete For Sustainable Green Environment And New Construction Applications: An Experimental Pilot Study

Dr. Mori Toosi, Dr. Wafeek Wahby, Dr. Peter Liu

Abstract: The experimental study funded by Illinois Sustainable Technology Center will help finding sustainable construction applications of ash from one of the largest biomass projects in the nation; the Renewable Energy Center of Eastern Illinois University.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Application of Customer Service Techniques To Investigative Police Reporting

Det. Kent Martin, Dr. Isaac Slaven

Abstract: Training methods to improve initial incident reporting at a university police department. Using training modules and job-aids met specific training objectives, creating a cost-effective reference tool for continued use by the police investigators.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Study of Regional Biomass Feedstock As Resources For Renewable Bio-Energy

Mr. Patrick Lyons, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Dr. Isaac Slaven

Abstract: A model will be presented for classifying biomass as a sustainable energy source based of geographical location and localized plant growth to make transportation for biomass gasification economically feasible.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Investigation of The Local Biomass Resources For Sustainable Energy

Mr. Chengdong Hu, Dr. Jerry Cloward, Dr. Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: The process of identification of local biomass resources; through testing the available biomass in comparison with wood chips, alternative biomass sources were identified for the Renewable Energy Center and other sustainable energy applications.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Developing an Android Programming Course For Technology Students In Mobile Age

Dr. Rendong Bai, Dr. Peter Ping Liu, Eastern Illinois University, Mr. Daniel Harvey, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Abstract: The transition to mobile computing led the presenters to develop an Android programming course. Information on the Android platform, architecture, development environment, application components, and how to write an Android app.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Opportunities in Using Mobile Biomass Pellet-Making Equipment For Energy Production

Dr. Isaac Slaven, Dr. Jerry Cloward

Abstract: The experience of adapting mobile biomass pellet production equipment for use through the creation of a technique so that locally available material can more effectively be included in biomass pellets that meet hardwood fuel pellet production.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Utilizing Faculty Advisor Models To Prepare Students For Successful Participation In An Increasingly Diverse Workforce

Dr. Isaac Slavens, Mr. Todd Bruns

Abstract: There have been few specific programs helping students gain the skills needed for in increasingly diverse work environments. The presentation will discuss non-formal learning environments which improved students’ skills in nebulous but vital areas.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013. 

 

Using Mobile Biomass Pellet-Making Equipment to Support Course Learning Objectives

Dr. Isaac Slaven, Dr. David Melton

Abstract: The audience will see the experience of adapting mobile biomass pellet production equipment for classroom use through the creation of procedure and safety manuals based upon the equipment and course learning objective.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013.

 

Innovative Underwater Construction Projects Applying Deep Ocean Technologies

Dr. Wafeek Wahby

Abstract: Deep ocean technologies empower developers and technologists to venture literally into uncharted waters as innovative underwater construction projects may soon be widespread, utilizing deep ocean technologies.

Presented at the 2013 ATMAE Conference: Developing the Future Workforce. New Orleans, LA. Nov. 20 -23, 2013. 

 

Biometric Technologies: Security and Privacy

Dr. Rigoberto Chinchilla

Abstract: “Biometric technologies: Security and privacy” will describe the basics of biometric technologies and the philosophy of security behind these technologies. This presentation will also describe the privacy and constitutional issues that these new technologies will or have created in society.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013.

 

Clean Energy Research and Education: Looking Forward

Peter Ping Liu

Abstract: In order for us to integrate the opportunities brought by the Renewable Energy Center at EIU, the university established the Center for Clean Energy Research and Education (CENCERE). CENCERE has enabled the cross disciplinary interactions among many faculty, staff and students from many departments across the campus. It has become of an integral part of the overall effort for the university to think forward and act concertedly for a better future.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013.

 

DNA: Family, Forensics, and FIDO

Dr.Thomas Canam

Abstract: This talk reviewed the history of DNA from its discovery as the heritable substance in cells to its uses in everyday society. In particular, the role DNA and genetics play in determining human ancestry, apprehending criminals, and developing dog breeds will be explored.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Regional Development of Sustainable Bioenergy Crops: The Changing Face of Agriculture in Illinois and Its Impacts on Wildlife

Dr. Jill Deppe

Abstract: As worldwide fossil fuel supplies dwindle, our nation strives to identify solutions for securing our energy future. Sustainable bioenergy is one way to expand our nation’s energy portfolio, reduce carbon emmissions and, if done properly, maintain biodiversity. As new bioenergy markets develop, the Midwest landscape may soon be dotted with new crops dedicated to bioenergy production. One such bioenergy crop is Miscanthus giganteus, commonly known as Mxg or simply miscanthus. Miscanthus has several characteristics that make it a good candidate as a bioenergy feedstock; however, miscanthus differs from traditional row crops and native cover types in its structure, growth pattern and harvesting regime, leading to uncertainty about how it will impact regional wildlife. Our research group, consisting of faculty and graduate students from the Biological Sciences Department, is working on local farms in east-central Illinois to understand how dedicated bioenergy crops will impact regional wildlife and how the preservation of natural or semi-natural cover types in the landscape may help mitigate those impacts. We will discuss preliminary results regarding mammal and bird responses to small scale miscanthus production. As the bioenergy footprint grows in the Midwest, we will need to understand and account for relationships between these new crop types and the diversity, distribution and fitness of wildlife.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

A Future of Radical Abundance: Transforming the Material Basis of Civilization

Dr. James N. McKirahan, Jr.

Abstract: The wealth and abundance of the developed world is linked to materials and tools usage. Dr. K. Eric Drexler, Ph.D. in Molecular Nanotechnology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and currently a visiting Academic at Oxford University in the UK and described as “the founding father of nanotechnology” discusses how nanotechnology materials usage will influence the future world toward radical abundance. Participants to this presentation will view Dr. Drexler’s June 2013, TEDx presentation entitled, “Radical Abundance: How a Revolution in Nanotechnology Will Change Civilization” to participate in a question-guided colloquy.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

It’s All about Concentration Gradients

Dr. Gopal Periyannan

Abstract: Interconversion between different forms of energy is observed in physical and biological entities. It is an essential phenomenon for the functions of many biological systems and survival of all organisms. For example, conversion of solar energy into chemical energy by photosynthesis is the source of energy that is passed through the food chain. One important form of biological energy is the chemical concentration gradients found across biological membranes. ATP - ‘the universal energy currency’- synthesis is a well-known example of a biological process that utilizes proton concentration gradient across the inner mitochondrial membrane. Many bacterial species generate chemical concentration gradients across biological membranes and utilize it to perform life-supporting functions such as material transport across membranes, movement and energy storage. Deeper understanding of the generation and utilization of chemical concentration gradients and membrane-based technologies in bacteria may lead to novel applications.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Sir Isaac Newton

Dr. Steven Daniels

Abstract: Science and technology took some major turns through the work of Sir Isaac Newton in the late 1600’s and early 1700’s. His story is one of complex interactions between people, science, and institutions. Newton changed the path of science and technology in several important ways. His legacy extends to the present as many of his theories and discoveries are still considered the basis of current understanding. In this talk we will consider the man, his contributions, and how thinking has been altered by his insights.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Thomas Malthus & His Legacies

Michael Cornebise

Abstract: Thomas Malthus (1766-1834) was a British clergyman and expert on demography and economics. In 1798, he published An Essay on the Principle of Population, a book that was considered one of the most influential works of its era. Malthus’ ideas on human population dynamics continue to spark debate as the World’s population of 7.1 billion continues to grow apace. This presentation will discuss Malthus’ key ideas and show how they influence modern thought on human population issues.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Longitude and Time: How a Simple Pocket Watch Ushered in the Era of Global Positioning

Dr. Barry Kronenfeld

Abstract: Where on earth are we? People have long known how to determine latitude from the stars, but a practical method of determining longitude eluded the greatest thinkers including Galileo, Huygens and Newton. This talk follows the story of longitude and its surprising solution by a self-educated English clockmaker named John Harrison, whose pioneering work laid the foundation for modern mapping and timekeeping.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Technology Innovation from a History of Energy Crises

Dr. Isaac Slaven

Abstract: Throughout history, the demand for energy has brought about innovation and invention. Sometimes these are new technologies, and other times they are bygone technologies that are adapted to the new situation. This presentation explores some of the innovations that energy crises have brought about.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013. 

 

Space: The Final Frontier - A Personal Voyage

David Linton

Abstract: One of the most recent revolutions in human capability began on October 4, 1957, with the launch of Sputnik 1. Mr. Linton recounts the events of the Moon Race that occurred as he was growing up and deciding on a career in science. He also speculates where this is leading us.

Presented at The First EIU Technology & Science Symposium: REVOLUTIONS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PARADIGMS. Oct. 6 – Nov 7, 2013.

 

An Energy Conversion Efficiency Comparison of Arundo Donax and Woodchips Gasification as Renewable Energy

Wang, Wei

Abstract: Identifying regional alternative biomass fuels for gasification process is significant in terms of energy and cost efficiency. Arundo donax is one type of promising energy crop that has superior yield while needs low energy input for its growth. This research compares the thermal conversion efficiency for Arundo donax and woodchips, seeking alternative biomass fuel for the region. The higher heating value of biomass fuels was tested by a bomb calorimeter as energy input. The biomass fuels were also burned in a laboratory scale downdraft gasification system to produce combustible syngas. The syngas samples were collected and analyzed through gas chromatography. The gas composition results were used to calculate syngas heating value as energy output. The thermal conversion efficiency is identified by the ratio of energy input and output.

Presented at An Energy Conversion Efficiency Comparison of Arundo Donax and Woodchips Gasification as Renewable Energy. Midwest Biochar Conference. Champaign, IL. June 14, 2013.